A plaque on the brick wall at the corner of Garrioch Road and Maryhill Road is the only clue to the one-time military significance of that part of Glasgow.

Nowadays the flats and grassy areas of the Wyndford housing estate house hundreds of families.

But for almost a century the 30-acre site behind the wall was home to the most famous military complex in the west of Scotland - Maryhill Barracks.

Hitler's Deputy Rudolf Hess was taken there for questioning after his so-called "peace mission" ended with his plane crashing in a field near Eaglesham.

And ex- French President Charles de Gaulle, while he was leader of the Free French forces during the Second World War, visited his troops while they were stationed at Maryhill.

The barracks were built in 1872 to replace the old Infantry Barracks in Duke Street.

They became closely associated with the Highland Light Infantry (City of Glasgow Regiment), commonly known as the HLI.

For the people of Maryhill, the barracks were a focal point of the community. It gave the area a sense of pride. Maryhill was effectively a garrison town. The Solder's Hotel was a favourite among the troops and later became the Maryhill Trades Union Centre.

There were also pubs called the Highland Light Infantry (the HLI Bar) at the corner of Maryhill Road and Kelvinside Avenue, and the Elephant and Bugle on Maryhill Road.

In 1919 Glasgow was hit by riots during a 40-hour General Strike - but the soldiers based at Maryhill were not used to quell the disturbances.

At the forefront of the riots were Glasgow men who were just back from the war. They were expecting a home fit for heroes and were fully in support of the strike.

The troops billeted at Maryhill were all veterans of the front and the government figured they could not be trusted to obey orders to turn their guns on the strikers.

Instead, the government used young and inexperienced English troops, who were ignorant of the situation.

In the early 1960s, shortly after the amalgamation of the Highland Light Infantry and the Royal Scots Fusiliers, the barracks were decommissioned and demolished.

It was the end of an era for Maryhill and a poignant episode in Scottish military history.

The plaque on the wall at the corner of Garrioch Road gives a potted history of the barracks. Like many of the historical items I have highlighted, it has been a bit defaced and is diffficult to read.

Perhaps Glasgow City Council could find a way of cleaning up the city's proud and memorable past.